Using geographical indications for signalling quality and reducing transaction costs of marketing Uyui honey from Tanzania

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A high proportion of commodities in African countries face limitations in penetrating international markets, mainly because of low quality and high transaction costs (TCs) of marketing. This study responds to two research questions. One, does honey from the Uyui district in Tanzania has the potential for geographical indication (GI) labelling, potentially enhancing quality? Two, can GI labelling reduce TCs and improve market access? 83 beekeepers, 50 honey traders and 50 consumers were selected randomly for interviews in Uyui District and Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. Both primary and secondary data were collected on, cultural and historical identity, the local ecosystem, marketing and value addition technologies. The policy and legal framework for GI certification were also reviewed. Seven honey samples from Uyui District were tested for physicochemical characteristics and compared with the international standards. Since there is no GI labelled honey in Tanzania currently, a hypothetical case was created for respondents to compare the likely TCs with the current honey on the market. The results show that the honey from Uyui meets international quality standards in terms of physicochemical characteristics. Also respondents perceived significantly lower TCs for the hypothetical GI-labelled than the non-GI-labelled honey. However, GI registration of Tanzania honeys is currently hindered by lack of relevant intellectual property right laws, limited cooperation among producers, and in the case of Uyui, a unique reputation has to be restored.
Original languageEnglish
JournalForest, Trees and Livelihoods
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)118-138
Number of pages21
Publication statusPublished - 2018

ID: 192456042